The second King of the Monsters game has greatly improved graphics and music, and very slightly improved gameplay, but it feels even cheaper than the original.

The setup is that only three monsters survived the original battles - Ultraman clone, giant robo-monkey and shrimpy Godzilla. Aliens attack Earth, coincidentally having their own assemblage of giant monsters, so we're off to fight them now.

At least the game lets you know you're in for SNK Difficulty right from the first fight. The first boss can basically just wander over and grab you for a throw that takes off half your health whenever he feels like it, and then he can follow up with a butt charge right as you're getting up that can't be avoided and takes off nearly the other half. You burn through your quarter's worth of three lives in record time with how much damage the enemies do in this game.

Whoever initiates grapples in this game wins. If the CPU initiates it, you're prompted to button-mash to overcome it but I've never seen that work once yet. Not worth wearing out your controller and finger joints trying.

Your only reliable advantage is a charge move that makes you temporarily invincible and lets you land maybe three hits or so, but it's impossible to pull off unless you do it right after the enemy is knocked down. Later enemies get up too fast for even that to work reliably.

This all gets even worse as it goes on, with later levels infested with fake power-ups that weaken you and enemies that can snatch all your badly-needed life bar upgrades from you with just one sudden hit from off-screen.

The cheapness of this game is egregious, it was clearly a spectacle fighter meant to suck quarters out of kids as ruthlessly as possible. Too bad as it has that nice SNK polish and it's amusingly brutal.

Videos :

* Gameplay Video